Love Lessons We Learned from 'Grease' That Aren't Actually True

Summer lovin' had you a blast and the guy's gone five minutes into Fall? You don't actually have to become a leather-clad vixen just to win him back.

You have to become someone you're not for love: False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

So now that Sandy is a black leather-clad, cigarette-smoking vixen and Danny is a cardigan-wearing, letterman jock they can finally be together? That makes absolutely no sense! At the beginning, Sandy was "too pure to be pink" and Danny was the douchey-leader of the T-Birds and then they basically switch spots - Sandy looks like a T-Bird's ol' lady and Danny, a more talkative version of the jock Sandy dates at the beginning. How does that suddenly make them the perfect couple? They are both faking it for each other so why not just be yourself and be together? Aside from the cigarette smoking and obvious overuse of hairspray, nothing has changed. Sandy is still the same Sandy she was before, with a sexier outfit — and let's be honest, Danny is still the same greasy-haired T-Bird, he's just wearing a sweater. A sweater and a cigarette = love? Nope.

Smoking cigarettes makes you cool and/or sexy: False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

This goes along with the lesson above: Sandy is not all of a sudden a sexpot because the girls have taught her how to smoke a cigarette (and how to put it out like a lady!). And no matter what Frenchy tells you, it is definitely not how she got her nickname.

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

Smoking cigarettes does not make you cool or sexy or better than the person who doesn't smoke cigarettes, no matter what your friends or hookups tell you. Literally, the only thing not smoking cigarettes makes you is healthier. Entire classes in grade school are devoted solely to this point: "Just Say No!" 

Being a "Sandy" is so uncool: False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

According to the Pink Ladies, not having promiscuous sex, not underage drinking and not smoking are soo uncool. But why all the judgement? Go ahead and have all the fun you want, but let your friend make her own damn decisions. This is literally the worst case of peer pressure ever!

Poor Sandy is blatantly being made fun of by her new "friends" for being straight edge, yet she seems to be the only one with her shit together. Frenchy is a high school dropout and beauty school failure, Marty is ready to drop her Marine for Vince Fontaine and a chance to be on television, Jan is busy chasing Twinkies with cheap wine, and Rizzo has a whole set of her own issues (as discussed at length below). And in the end, all it takes is a little outfit change and a lot of hairspray and Sandy is the coolest one. Point proven.

There's an age where you will be too old to "get your kicks": False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

This coming from Rizzo, a high school student, who looks like she is no less than 45 years old. So, if you take that fact into account, she may actually be much closer to the age she is referring to than we think - and then the lesson is no longer false. However, most people over the age of 18 would disagree. Trust me, the kicks keep on coming long after high school, so don't be in such a rush to jump out a window and ditch your girls for a hookup. There is plenty of time for that later, and you won't even have to shimmy down a drain pipe to make it happen.

The worst thing you can do is cry in front of a guy: False

Love Lessons We Learned from 'Grease' That Aren't Actually True

So says the possibly pregnant girl singing about being the school slut. How is it that a public display of emotion is the worst thing on her list? While she clearly thinks it's a sign of weakness in light of her bad-girl, "I don't give a shit what you think" demeanor, there's a long list of things that are worse: having sex with Kenickie without a condom, lying to him about who the father of the possible fetus is, an overall bad attitude towards men, her friends, and complete strangers; being covered in hickeys to the point that "people will think I'm a leper." These are all higher on the worst-things-you-could-do list than crying in front of your hookup. Sorry, Riz.

Being covered in hickys is a privilege: False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

Just as I explained with the false lesson learned above, being covered in hickeys is not some sort of trophy or privilege for hooking up with someone - it's just trashy. Now I know, in high school (and in life) hickeys happen. But when you're so covered that you're going to be confused for someone with a seriously contagious skin disease, the person putting them there has crossed a line where the hickeys go from incidental to intentional.

Guardian angels are horribly mean and judgmental: False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'
False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

Frenchy's guardian 'Teen Angel' clearly never read Cinderella (a fairy godmother is kind of the same thing as a guardian angel, right?). I mean, the man is mean! "You're not cut out to hold a job, who wants their hair done by a slob?" What guardian angel says that to a young girl whose dreams were just crushed? Poor Frenchy dropped out of high school, failed out of beauty school, and now her so-called guardian angel shows up just in time to kick her when she's down.

"Well at least you could have taken time to wash and clean your clothes up, after spending all that dough to have the doctor fix your nose up!" What kind of angelic advice is that? I highly doubt "even Dear Abby'd say the same!"

If you dance like this:

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

...your date will leave you for a better dancer (and a bigger hoochie): False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

So Sandy's dancing is sort of vanilla and Cha Cha's known as "the best dancer at Saint Bernadette's - with the worst reputation" and what happens? Danny immediately ditches Sandy for the better dancer, his ex-hookup, and Kenickie's date. There are so many problems with this that I don't even know where to start. Danny is the worst date/boyfriend/friend ever. 


It's okay to sit around and wait: False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

C'mon Sandy, you're so much better than this! The guy you thought you were in love with just completely blew you off and now you're willing to sit around and wait for him to change his mind and realize what he's lost? False! You don't sit around waiting for anyone, especially someone who doesn't deserve you in the first place. 

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

You go out and find someone who will respect you from the beginning - not someone who thinks it's acceptable to make you duck down and hide behind menus so no one will see you together.

"There ain't no such thing" as someone special: False

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

I know Rizzo is cynical and bitchy and anything she says should be taken very lightly, but the girl is so negative! Bright and sunny Sandy is pouring her heart out to a table of complete strangers and all Rizzo does is rain all over her parade. And while I don't agree with the changes that took place, it does seem that in the end Danny and Sandy did in fact have something special - and it seems that Rizzo and Kenickie did too...

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

Hypocrite.

The only man a girl can depend on is her daddy: partially false!

False Lessons in Love We Learned from 'Grease'

Ok so mostly yes, girls can usually depend on their daddy. However, stating that your dad is the only dependable man isn't exactly true. What about your grandpa, or your brother, or your husband or boyfriend? What if your dad is actually a terrible person?

I understand that even Frenchy's male guardian Teen Angel isn't dependable, but she is making a gross over-generalization here. She is kind of being a man-hater: "Men are rats, listen to me, they're fleas on rats, worse than that, they're amoebas on fleas on rats. I mean, they're too low for even the dogs to bite." Wow French, why don't you tell her how you really feel?

Fashion, beauty and lifestyle editor at Livingly. Miami Hurricane obsessed, forever Miami Heat loyal, Food Network junkie. You can reach me anytime at alison.higgins@livingly.com.
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